6,000 reception places created in 2019
Occupancy in Fedasil's reception facilities is increasing. The following is an initial assessment of the figures for the past year:
Increase in arrivals
Applications for asylum (international protection) in Belgium are still on the rise - even if the record levels of 2015 have not been reached. As a result, Fedasil recorded an increase in the number of asylum seekers entering its reception network: 23,158 people entered in 2019 (+19% compared to 2018). The main countries of origin were Syria, Afghanistan, Palestine, El Salvador and Eritrea.
Increase in occupancy
At the same time, the increased time required to process asylum applications results in a longer stay in the reception centres. The increase in arrivals has therefore gone hand in hand with a decrease in the number of people leaving the reception facilities. As a result, the centres have gradually reached saturation (several centres exceed 100% occupancy).
However, Fedasil hopes that, in the medium term, the recruitment of staff within the asylum authorities (Immigration Office, CGRS) will make it possible to speed up the processing of asylum applications, and consequently departures from the asylum centres.
Opening of centres
In order to avoid a shortage of places, Fedasil and its partners have opened a large number of places as a matter of urgency. Each month, around 700 additional places are needed on average.
In 2019, 5,776 places were created, either by opening new temporary centres or by increasing the number of beds in existing centres. Tents and accommodation containers have also been set up in several centres.
Fedasil and its partners are preparing other centre openings. Moreover, the Agency is always looking for new buildings.